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News » Indianapolis Colts Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-20


Indianapolis Colts Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-20


Indianapolis Colts Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-20
Despite a new head coach, a new quarterbacks coach and a new defensive coordinator, don't expect a lot of wholesale changes to what the Colts have had success with in recent years.


Indianapolis' basic offensive and defensive schemes will remain basically the same, although there will be the expected tweaking that goes on every offseason. Free agency, however, may force the team to use more younger players in 2009.

"We always have had young guys in position who have been able to step forward and fill that void and go on and be players who have contributed greatly within the organization within a very short period of time. That's what we expect in this particular case as well. This year won't be any different," Caldwell said.

TEAM NEEDS/OFFSEASON STRATEGY:

With CB Kelvin Hayden and C Jeff Saturday locked up for the next three seasons, the Colts have turned the attention to three of their exclusive rights free agents.

OG/OT Dan Federkeil, RB Lance Ball and LB Buster Davis have all been re-signed, joining DT Daniel Muir -- another exclusive rights free agent -- who was re-signed last week. There has been no movement regarding unrestricted free agents RB Dominic Rhodes, CB Keiwan Ratliff, LB Tyjuan Hagler and DE Josh Thomas. Indianapolis had already announced that it would not offer a contract to LB Freddy Keiaho (restricted free agent) and P Hunter Smith (unrestricted free agent).

TEAM NEEDS

1. Wide receiver: With opposing defenses having their cornerbacks squatting on the Colts' outside receivers last year, Indianapolis is expected to look for an athletic, big-play receiver in the draft. There's some depth there in this year's draft class.

2. Defensive tackle: Getting bigger but retaining quickness and athletic skills will be key in finding a defensive tackle in this year's draft. A run-stopper who can also provide some much needed push up the middle as a pass rusher will be key.

3. Linebacker: Improving depth at a position that appears to have lost a couple of key players during the offseason is important. While overall size isn't a major problem when it comes to drafting linebackers, quickness, athletic ability and speed are important tools to possess.

MEDICAL WATCH: RB Clifton Dawson spent a portion of the 2008 season on the Colts' injured reserve list due to a concussion that he received in early November. Dawson is expected to be available for the start of the team's OTA sessions this spring.

FRANCHISE PLAYER: None.

TRANSITION PLAYER: None.

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS

--S Matt Giordano will test the open market. May re-sign with the Colts later.

--LB Tyjuan Hagler is not expected to be re-signed. Could return, however, if the price is right.

--CB Keiwan Ratliff may be back at a later date. He will test the free-agent market first, though.

--RB Dominic Rhodes would like to remain with the Colts, but will take the opportunity to see what kind of money may be available.

--P Hunter Smith was not offered a contract and at this point will probably not return to the Colts.

--DE Josh Thomas could also return later in the offseason if the right kind of deal can be worked out.

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS (not tendered)

--LB Freddy Keiaho (not tendered as RFA) has become a quality starter for the Colts on the weak side. Is valuable since he can play all three linebacking roles if needed. Could be re-signed at less than the RFA tender.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: None.

EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS: None.

PLAYERS RE-SIGNED

--RB Lance Ball: ERFA; terms unknown.

--LB Buster Davis: ERFA; terms unknown.

--G/T Daniel Federkeil: ERFA; terms unknown.

--CB Kelvin Hayden: Potential UFA; $43M/5 yrs, $22M guaranteed.

--DT Daniel Muir: ERFA; terms unknown.

--C Jeff Saturday: Potential UFA; $13.3M/3 yrs, $7.45M SB; 2009 cap: $3.98M.

PLAYERS ACQUIRED

--P Mike Dragosavich (waivers Browns).

PLAYERS LOST

--WR Marvin Harrison (released).

--DT Darrell Reid: UFA Broncos; $6.8M/3 yrs, SB unknown.



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 20, 2009

TJ Rushing Name: TJ Rushing
#34
Position: S
Age: 25
Experience: 3 years
College: Stanford
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